If you haven’t heard: NTEU’s lawsuit challenging provisions in the president’s three executive orders was successful! We won in federal court with a judge declaring that nine of the 11 provisions we challenged were in violation of existing federal law.
You have been threatened by these executive orders at the bargaining table and yesterday NTEU sent a letter to HHS demanding that the department return to negotiations with NTEU.
To recap: NTEU and HHS completed only two days of bargaining before the management team threw down a last offer that followed the illegal directives in the executive orders. The HHS offer would take important rights and benefits away from you including established telework and AWS programs, awards and basic workplace rights.
That proposal cannot stand. NTEU reminded HHS of its obligation, under the law, to meet with us with a sincere resolve to reach a contract that both sides agree to. That effort must begin now.
Despite our court victory, we must keep the pressure on HHS to do the right thing. Here’s how:
- Continue to sign our petition asking Secretary Azar to rescind this set of bargaining proposals
- Wear a Shame on HHS sticker and wear black clothing on Wednesdays
- Tweet Secretary Azar at @SecAzar and demand full and fair bargaining
Should HHS continue to ignore its obligation to bargain in good faith, it will commit an unfair labor practice, which can be challenged in the negotiated grievance procedure. Defiance of the court’s order, on the other hand, could result in an action to enforce the court’s ruling. NTEU stands ready to take appropriate steps to protect the HHS employees we represent. But if HHS employees continue to speak out, apply pressure and refuse to accept your department’s actions we can force HHS to listen to its own employees.
We have worked too hard to create a workplace where employees have access to programs that work for you and the American public, and where you are treated fairly. HHS is determined to roll back our gains and leave decisions about whether these programs exist and who can participate solely in the hands of management.
We have a strong victory and momentum on our side. Let’s keep going.
“…to ensure that every federal employee is treated with dignity and respect.”